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FEV, Inc., a leading developer of advanced powertrain and vehicle technologies, has commissioned a Hybrid and Electric Vehicle Development Center (HEVDC) at its Auburn Hills campus. The HEVDC was developed over a period of two years, with the final phase being the installation of a dedicated chassis dynamometer for hybrid and electric vehicle testing.

FEV invested approximately $8 million into development of the HEVDC, which became fully operational with the installation of the vehicle chassis dyno.

The market, whether by congressional or state mandate, or by consumer choice, is headed in a greener direction, and it’s headed there quickly. If the infrastructure to develop and thoroughly test hybrid and electric technology is not in place soon, even immediately, then we risk losing precious time and dollars in getting it on the street, or worse, putting technology out there that will not live up to its promise.

—Gary Rogers, FEV president and CEO

The HEVDC, which is the North American part of FEV’s worldwide competence in hybrid and EV technology, is an evolution of FEV’s development efforts in the areas of hybrid and electric vehicles. Enabling technology include:

  • Hybrid powertrain test cells
  • Hybrid/EV transmission test rigs
  • Electric motor test rigs
  • Hybrid and electric vehicle chassis dyno
  • Electric charging station for PHEVs and EVs

The electric charging station is believed to be the first in Michigan, and will also be used to develop and validate PHEV charging systems.

All of the testing facilities are connected to multiple battery emulation systems to facilitate hybrid and electric vehicle development without the need to use individual batteries, thus avoiding downtime while batteries are recharged, or not available. FEV says it is the first company to employ a battery emulation system in conjunction with a chassis dyno in order to test full vehicle functionality of hybrid and electric systems.

The facility has the capability to test hybrid and electric propulsion systems of near limitless size. The battery emulation system can provide up to 900 volts (current production hybrids use approximately 300 volts).

FEV anticipates an increase in staffing to accommodate the activity level of the HEVDC, including the addition of highly specialized engineering and technical personnel.

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